WASHINGTON, Oct. 13 (UPI) -- There is no connection between closing the Guantanamo Bay prison camp and an Afghan reconciliation process, the U.S. State Department declared.
U.S. President Barack Obama promised to close the detention center at the U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Washington may reconsider, however, in an effort to try suspected terrorist masterminds like Khalid Sheik Mohammed before military tribunals.
Nevertheless, several detainees are slowly being released from the controversial prison facility. The United Nations, meanwhile, is examining its so-called 1267 list of sanctioned al-Qaida suspects in an effort to remove moderate Taliban members.
P.J. Crowley, a spokesman for the U.S. State Department, said Washington was evaluating modifications to the sanctions list as Kabul kicks off a formal reconciliation and reintegration process.
"I would not connect our ongoing activity to work to close the facility at Guantanamo with the efforts at reconciliation and reintegration in Afghanistan," he added.
Early this week, Afghan President Hamid Karzai appointed former President Burhanuddin Rabbani to lead a 70-member council tasked with reconciling with certain members of the Taliban
Karzai outlined a peace and reconciliation plan during a May visit to Washington that invited moderate members of the Taliban to the political process in exchange for pledges of peace.